What the Aviation Safety Action Program Taught Me about Mental Health and Guns

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Reader Eric L. writes:

In 1966 the Director of the Bureau of Safety of the U.S. Civil Aeronautics Board, Bobbie R. Allen, referred to the vast amount of accumulated aviation safety incident information as “a sleeping giant”.  He noted that fear of legal liability or disciplinary action prevented dissemination of information and therefore rendered it valueless to those who were tasked with improving the safety of the aviation system. Boiled down, it means that those who made mistakes (pilots, dispatchers, controllers, and mechanics) were not reporting those mistakes because of a fear of termination with their company or revocation of their operating license. Mr. Allen further said . . .

In the event that fear of exposure cannot be overcome by other means, it might be profitable if we explored a system of incident reporting which would assure a substantial flow of vital information to the computer for processing, and at the same time, would provide some method designed to effectively eliminate the personal aspect of the individual occurrences so that the information derived would be helpful to all and harmful to none.

In layman’s terms he advocated a way for personnel to report mistakes to an appropriate agency and, if the report met certain criteria, no action would be permitted to be taken by either the company they worked for or that agency that licensed them.

The Aviation Safety Action Program (ASAP) was introduced and has been an overwhelming success. NASA runs the program, as it has no enforcement power against the parties reporting and any identifying information is almost immediately removed as soon as the report is accepted. The only time the report is not accepted is if it involves criminal activity or wanton disregarding of the regulations.

I filled out an ASAP report this morning, and I soon found myself reading TTAG articles awash with mental health topics. I don’t have to wonder if we are failing to protect people who may want to seek help.

The President wants to not only take your guns if you seek help for a mental illness, but also enlarge the definition of mental illness to include more people…so he can confiscate more guns. California Assembly Bill 950 which legalized gun violence restraining orders creates a mechanism so people who are unconstitutionally stripped of their rights can keep their guns at an FFL while having their rights violated. As if I’d trust Jerry Brown to keep my guns safe from harm.

Bill 950 is like putting a BAND-AID on an amputation. I know fellow veterans who refuse to seek help either from the VA or other medical professionals because they fear violation of their rights as a consequence.

Sound familiar? Who would have thought that another government agency would provide the answer to the problem of mental illness and access to firearms?

What needs to happen is the establishment of an information gathering system similar to the ASAP system. Information reported from patients needs to be de-identified immediately and sent to an agency with no powers of prosecution for analysis. Patients are treated locally by the best means available without government intrusion. No patient will be prosecuted or have their rights violated by any government agency because those agencies will not have any information on the patient.

The key to a working system that can effectively help people who are struggling with mental health issues is a clear demonstration that they will be treated without government intrusion, violation of rights, or prosecution because of their desire to seek help. Only with a system with that as the cornerstone will we be able to gather enough information to identify, assist, and rehabilitate those who are struggling with mental illness.

How likely is the Obama administration to enact a system such as this? About as like as I am to see a picture of an Israeli supermodel on TTAG tomorrow. Unfortunately.

comments

  1. avatar Anony-Mouse says:

    All well and good LOL. Just who the hell is gonna pay for those “mental health services?” And what will be the competency of those “therapists” to whom the person would go? I can answer that: NONE WHATSOEVER. Right. Trust your 2A rights to the “therapy” provided by a person who is maybe a cut and half above burger slingers. Just the way it is. 🙁 🙁

  2. avatar MamaLiberty says:

    That would be wonderful if the people who managed the reporting system and the people who controlled the care were all free agents and had no political agenda. Not happening.

    As a health care professional, also a qualified clinical psychologist, (now retired), I can assure you that everyone involved has a pretty clear view of what it takes to continue in their profession and to satisfy the political pressures involved.

    Just as an example, any health care professional who insists on telling the truth, documenting exactly the truth of what happens, making plans with the actual patient needs and concerns up front, or who makes waves for the so-called superiors at any point… will not last long in that profession. They will conform or be driven out.

    The result, for those who are truly interested in what’s right, doing a job with integrity and honor… serious cognitive dissonance and all of the necessary elements of a nervous breakdown.

    What will help everyone is the removal of government from any aspect of health care, including mental health. The political agenda is the poison.

  3. avatar Removed_californian says:

    Well I’m sure if you asked RF or another contributor nicely that they would link something related to IDF’s finest.

      1. avatar Geoff PR says:

        Partially clothed please, OneOfTheGoodGuys…

        🙂

      2. avatar Danny Griffin says:

        God bless you.

      3. avatar Doug Knaus says:

        I’m in love. Is she married? Does she have health insurance?

  4. avatar mark s. says:

    I know it isn’t a popular position but I really think most people who have mental disorders and depression are just as capable as you and I would be to own a firearm . Just because I is crazy don’t make me a killer .
    A mentally challenged individual and a depressed person should have just as much right as anyone to defend themselves . If you want to kill yourself , a gun just makes it a bit easier if you know what you’re doing . You should have a right to kill yourself in my opinion .
    The only people who should be deprived of their 2nd A rights are people who have already shown themselves irresponsible in the use of a firearm and this has me a bit queasy because everyone has the ability to reform and mature and be responsible even after they have made mistakes .
    This is a legit question , does law enforcement restrict the ownership of knives on felons who have used a knife to commit murders ?

    1. avatar mark s. says:

      Please , if you will . allow me one more thought .
      God , through the power of the Holy Spirit and in the redemption through grace by the resurrection of Jesus Christ , can totally transform a purely evil person into a saint . He can reform the drunk , clean up the drug addict , heal those addicted to porn and unclean sexual fantasies , He can mend the mind and soul and change the hand of a murderer to the hand of a healer yet we deprive all felons from their 2nd A rights to defend themselves and their families no matter how they have reformed themselves .

      1. avatar LarryinTX says:

        “He can reform the drunk , clean up the drug addict , heal those addicted to porn and unclean sexual fantasies , He can mend the mind and soul and change the hand of a murderer to the hand of a healer”

        Really? That kinda sounds like magic. So, if he can do that, why doesn’t he?

        Silliness and magic are not going to be the solution.

        1. avatar mark s. says:

          Dear Larry , He does every second of every day .
          I was a heavy drug user , daily drinker , had multiple affairs on two wives , watched porn routinely and for many years I could not go to sleep unless I was having a sexual fantasy . I tried to overcome each of these obstacles on my own for three decades without complete success , I did stop drinking and smoking pot and cigarettes and the affairs were so much easier to handle as I grew older and less attractive by the day but the one hill I seemed destined to never climb loomed .
          I finally ask Jesus Christ to help me with my finial great battle , the nighttime sexual fantasies that I had since I was very young . The request for His help was so incredibly sincere that He took them away that very night and I have been healed ever since . It has been many years now since I made that request and I have been so very blessed every day to walk a little closer to his path .
          To your point , please don’t sell God short , He can personally touch you . I am not crazy and I am witness .

  5. avatar OneOfTheGoodGuys says:

    Since I am a paranoid gun nut, I wouldn’t trust my information to be safe! Not that I’m pathologically paranoid or anything … just the right amount of paranoid.

    1. avatar anaxis says:

      “A paranoid is someone who knows a little of what’s going on; a psychotic is a guy who’s just found out what’s going on.”
      – William S. Burroughs

    2. avatar dph says:

      Just because I’m paranoid doesn’t mean that they are not out to get me.

  6. avatar Rusty Chains says:

    It is a good idea Eric! However it is never going to fly (sorry for the pun, but I had to). The difference is that the FAA and the NTSB, and NASA really were interested in safety and using the data in a way that would do so. The ATF, FBI, DOJ, and the White House are in no way truly interested in safety or the rights of citizens. They are only interested in conducting witch hunts that will support their utopian plan for universal control of everyone else.

  7. avatar Bill Kohnke says:

    This article reminds me of an incident in WWII during the buildup of American forces in England. Standing orders were to punish any solider who contracted a venereal disease. As a result of these rather puritanical and punitive measures, venereal disease rates climbed alarmingly, so much so that they threatened to adversely affect force readiness prior to the invasion of France (D-Day). The Army wisely reversed its policy and threatened to punish any solder who did not seek immediate inspection and treatment following a social dalliance. A pragmatic approach to the problem helped end WWII with an Allied victory. Perhaps it is time for the government to relearn this lesson.

  8. avatar Joe R. says:

    Reporting/tracking/disseminating. . . Works EVERY TIME. /sarc

    http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=french+pilot+crashes+plane+on+purpose&FORM=VIRE4#view=detail&mid=FCFC68E0EA5A5EADF65AFCFC68E0EA5A5EADF65A

    DO YOU KNOW WHAT DOES WORK EVERY F-ING TIME?

    You giving up listening to stupid people claiming that they can protect you.

    1. avatar Sheepdog6 says:

      No program is foolproof. It can realistically be said that changes in aviation procedures are written in blood…of course meaning that the change was only made after an accident with fatality or injury.

      The ASAP allows a way for changes to be made without accident or incident causing fatality or injury. Is it 100 percent foolproof. Nope…something about death and taxes.

      But it is a great safety system regardless.

  9. avatar Indiana Tom says:

    Obviously, anyone who owns or wants to own a gun or any other weapon is mentally ill as we all know Big Brother the government ministries are here to watch over and protect us from ourselves. Ingsoc Government and Collectivism is good and individual rights and actions are bad. People in private society are inherently bad, while people in a government ministry are inherently good. This is because in private society there is a profit motive; while in Ingsoc Government the profit motive has been eliminated. So, those in Oceania government ministries are automatically double plus good.

  10. avatar Ralph says:

    No patient will be prosecuted or have their rights violated by any government agency

    It’s a nice thought, but the fact is that several of those government agencies only exist to violate people’s gun rights. After all, what’s the point in having power if you can’t abuse it?

  11. avatar gsnyder says:

    I used to work in mental health and I can tell you this, there were people who were considered crazy by the State who I’d of trusted with a gun. They were off their rockers but they were not killers. The most dangerous people in our Country are anyone who seeks to destroy our foundational Rights. These are nothing short of terrorists.

  12. avatar BigBoy says:

    Bloomberg and the other anti-gunners do not care about mental health treatment, crime, or anything but getting those Deamon guns removed from Society. Everytime they say otherwise, they eventually get proved to be luars.

    Guns are inanimate objects made of metal or polymer. They are not evil incarnate that must be destroyed before everyone will be safe. It is a “religion of fools” guaranteed to fail. When the strong rule, the weak suffer. And the 99% of us are weaker than the 1% of truly EVIL human beings. They will be the ultimate beneficiaries of the elimination of the great “eaualizer”. And, the women in MDA will be the next round of sexual assault victims.

  13. avatar madtrader says:

    I like the ASAP system. I’ve filed 3 forms with NASA myself.

  14. avatar rlc2 says:

    NASA – isnt that the Muslim Outreach Agency?
    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2010/07/07/nasas_muslim_outreach_106214.html

    Or was it Global Warming for Dollars?
    https://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/spectacularly-poor-climate-science-at-nasa/

    After all, the Fed.Gov has such a great track record of protecting citizen rights:
    http://townhall.com/tipsheet/cortneyobrien/2015/04/25/bombshell-so-far-only-three-people-have-been-fired-after-va-scandal-n1989994

    Oh, yeah, I will trust them with my personal information, or any information… yep, you betcha.

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